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Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Frequently asked questions about Fall Meeting 2019

For quick information on Fall Meeting 2019, we encourage you to peruse our frequently asked questions. If your question is not addressed, please email us.

General | Sessions, scientific workshops, town halls, or events | Abstracts and guidelines | eLightningTechnology | Hotel and travel | Registration


Where is Fall Meeting 2019 being held?
Fall Meeting will be held at the George R. Moscone Convention Center (Moscone Center) located at:
747 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

What are the dates for Fall Meeting 2019?
Fall Meeting 2019 will be held from 9-13 December.

Plan Your Stay:
View the full online program; or view the schedule at a glance for the meeting.

When does the online registration tool open to register for the early bird fees?
Early registration will open in late August and close in November. Late fees apply for registration after 7 November.

What is the expected meeting attendance?
Approximately 28,000 attended the meeting in 2018; we expect to see everyone again this year.

What is new at Fall Meeting this year?
This year marks AGU’s Centennial. Fall Meeting will both celebrate the past and inspire the future of the sciences through engaged programming with new session formats, daily celebratory events and many opportunities to engage with the public and each other. More specific session and activity information is coming soon.

Do I have to be an AGU member to attend?
No, but AGU members, and those who are members of cooperating societies, who joined or renewed their membership by 14 October 2019, receive reduced registration rates. Join AGU or renew your membership: online, via email, or by phone at +1202.462.6900.

Will childcare be provided?
Subsidized child care is available, with registration opening in Fall 2019.

Can I smoke inside of the Moscone Center?
No. AGU promotes a smoke-free environment; this includes the use of electronic cigarettes.

How can my donations support future AGU Fall Meetings?
Attending an AGU meeting while a student can be a transforming experience that builds confidence, grows perspective, and forges a new network of scientific peers. This year, through the historic generosity of a long-time donor, donations made to the Austin Endowment for Student Travel will be matched 1:1 up to $1 million. With this match, your 2019 donation to the Austin Endowment for Student Travel will allow AGU to send nearly 100 additional students to AGU’s Fall Meeting each year. Donate now.

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How do I submit a proposal?
Session proposals will not be accepted after the 17 April deadline. Read our guidelines for submitting a proposal.
Event organizers may request event space in September. If you have questions about how to submit an event, contact AGU staff.

The scientific program mentions sessions that are co-organized/co-sponsored/cross-listed. What does this mean?
Learn more about collaborative session designations as well as other alternate formats.

As a session chair, what are my duties after the session proposal has been submitted?
Roles and responsibilities for session chairs are described in the Session Chair Guidelines.

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When do abstracts submission open and when is the deadline?
Abstract submissions are now open and will close 31 July.

Do I need to be an AGU member to submit an abstract?
The first author MUST be an AGU member and up-to-date on their 2019 membership dues in order to submit an abstract. Some exceptions apply (see below). Co-authors are not required to be AGU members. Join AGU or renew your membership today.

Are there exceptions to the AGU membership requirement for submitting an abstract?
Membership requirement exceptions are granted if you are a member of one of the co-sponsoring organizations or GeoHealth cooperating societies. Please review the dropdowns on our abstracts submission page for details. Note that you will still have to pay the abstract fee.

How many abstracts can I submit as a first author?
First authors can have a maximum of one contributed and one invited abstract or two invited abstracts. The only exemption to this policy is the submission of one additional contributed abstract to a GeoHealth (GH) session, Education (ED) session, Public Affairs (PA) session, or, for 2019, a Centennial SWIRL session.

Was I automatically registered for Fall Meeting when I submitted my abstract?
No, registration and abstract submission are two separate processes. All attendees must register and pay to attend the meeting; this policy includes invited authors and conveners.

When will I receive confirmation of my letter of notification regarding my abstract submission?
Acceptance letters will be distributed via email in early October.

May I request a refund for my abstract handling fee?
No, abstract submission fees are nonrefundable. Once the abstract has been submitted, it is considered processed, and no refunds will be issued.

Can I make changes to my abstract?
Changes to abstracts are not possible after the abstract submission deadline. Contact AGU staff for questions about abstracts.

Where can I locate the abstracts that were presented at previous Fall Meetings?
Review the abstracts archive to find out what abstracts were presented at previous meetings.

As a presenter, how should I prepare for my presentation?
Review the presenter guidelines for oral, poster, and eLightning sessions.

I have been assigned a poster presentation. Does AGU have an official poster printing service provider?
AGU will work with a vendor to assist with poster printing onsite;  view poster printing services.

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What if I don’t want to participate in eLightning?
Traditional sessions will still be available to you; presenters who are not interested in the eLightning presentations will not have any impact on their presentation just as those who elected to not participate in an alternate format in 2018 were not impacted by the new formats. eLightning sessions are completely optional.

What if I don’t want to make my eLightning presentation permanently available in the library?
There will be an opt-out for any presenter who does not want their presentation to be available after the meeting. This library will remain up for at least six months after the meeting. AGU is also investigating the various options for archiving eLightning presentations.

Is the eLightning library open access?
The presentations will be freely available. AGU is still considering which types of licenses to allow presenters to apply to their content, but a CC-BY license will certainly be an option.

Why is this named eLightning?
In 2016, AGU piloted a Lightning Poster Session format that allowed poster sessions to have a set time, outside of their designated time in the poster hall and in a separate room, for their presenters to give lightning presentations of their posters. This experiment was intended to encourage discussion, enable presenters in the same session to see each other present, and increase visibility of the posters. The current session format is built on the progress made and lessons learned from Lightning Poster Sessions, hence the Lightning in eLightning. We are adding additional value by providing more of an electronic ability, hence the e in eLightning. We also wanted to make sure that it wouldn’t be confused with our long-running ePoster program, where poster presenters are able to upload a static PDF copy of their poster to the online scientific program, so the word poster wasn’t included in the name.

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Will you offer a mobile app this year?
Yes, the mobile app will be available this fall.

What is AGU’s policy on photography at Fall Meeting?
AGU allows photography for personal use and social media use throughout AGU meetings – including scientific sessions, unless the presenter has exercised the right to be excluded. Review our meetings guidelines on photography and social media for more details.

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Can I still apply for a student travel grant?
The online student travel grant application process opens in mid-June and closes in August.

How do I request a letter of invitation for my visa application?
If you require a letter of invitation before submitting an abstract, you must request one via email. After submitting an abstract, you can automatically generate a letter of invitation through the abstract submission system.

When can I reserve my hotel room?
The online housing site will open in late August; more than 50 hotels will offer discounts.
IMPORTANT: If you are contacted by any company other than SPARGO offering housing, please note that these companies are not authorized to represent AGU nor do they have access to officially contracted AGU Fall Meeting 2019 room blocks or rates in.
These unauthorized companies often don’t deliver on promises to customers. When customers arrive, reservations are non-existent, or the hotels are not conveniently located. Sometimes the rooms have been cancelled and hefty cancellation fees have been placed on the customer’s credit card. In addition, these companies’ practices make it more difficult for AGU to meet our room block commitments and expose AGU to penalties. If you have questions, contact AGU’s housing team.

Will AGU charge my credit card to guarantee my reservation?
AGU will not charge your credit card. However, your hotel may charge a deposit of one night’s room and tax as early as three weeks prior to Fall Meeting. Deposit amounts may vary. Please refer to the deposit policy on your hotel confirmation.

Will I receive a hotel confirmation?
Yes. A detailed confirmation is automatically emailed to you once your reservation has been made.

What is the hotel cancellation policy?
There is a 72-hour cancellation notice required to avoid a penalty. If your reservation is cancelled less than 72 hours prior to your arrival, you will incur a one-night room and tax penalty from your hotel.

What is the closest airport?
San Francisco is accessible by two major airports. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) is the closest airport to San Francisco and the Moscone Center. It is one of the busiest airports in the country, with service from more than 45 airlines, national and international, and nonstop connections to more than 65 U.S. cities. Oakland International Airport (OAK) is 20 miles from downtown San Francisco and the Moscone Convention Center. OAK offers nonstop flights nationally and internationally.

What is the weather like in San Francisco during Fall Meeting?
San Francisco is fortunate to enjoy mild weather year-round. Average maximum temperatures in December range from 57°F/19°C to 47°F/9°C. The average rainfall is 3.5”/9 cm. San Francisco weather can change by the hour, so attendees are advised to pack layers and be sure to have a light jacket or coat and umbrella.

Does AGU offer travel discounts?
AGU has again teamed up with United Airlines to offer you discounts on air travel to Fall Meeting. Discounts are applicable from 6 December through 16 December 2019. Visit the United website and enter ZH2X812752 in the Offer Code box and click on the yellow arrow button to view discounted fares. Contact AGU with any questions.

Additional details about discounts will be posted in the summer.

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How do I register online for Fall Meeting?
The online registration tool will open in late August.

What does my registration fee include?
Your registration fee includes access to the Icebreaker Reception on Monday, 9 December, both oral and posters sessions, keynote lectures, exhibits, town hall meetings, and non-ticketed social events.

How do I purchase tickets to special events?
Tickets can be purchased via online registration which will open in late August.

May I bring a guest?
Registered attendees may purchase guest passes for a fee of $160 USD. A guest is a spouse, friend, or adult child (18 years and older) who is not working in an Earth and space science related occupation or field. A colleague or associate working in a related scientific field or studying Earth and space science in school may not register as a guest. Registered guests may not attend the oral or poster scientific sessions; however, they may go to the Exhibit Hall, the Ice Breaker Reception, the Honors Ceremony, and all keynote lectures. Guests are required to purchase tickets to social events at the advertised guest rates. Guess passes are available during registration, either online or onsite.

Is there a registration process for childcare?
Yes, AGU offers subsidized child services; online registration will be available in the fall.

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